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The Island of Kythira and the Peloponnese

from £1575
The walking trails of Kythira meander through green meadows, past old water mills and waterfalls and along pretty coastal routes attracting a new genre of visitors.

Tucked away at the southernmost point of Greece’s Peloponnese region you’ll find the quiet island of Kythira. It has long been a source of inspiration to artists and poets who were drawn by the island’s natural beauty and today the walking trails which meander through green meadows, past old water mills and waterfalls and along pretty coastal routes attract a new genre of visitors.

We start with time on the Peloponnese mainland at the small fishing port of Gythion, located deep in the Mani region, where we explore the countryside, walk to a small beach and visit ancient Sparta and the archaeological site of Mystra, once a strong castle-town, famed for its Byzantine churches and wonderful frescoes.

Taking the ferry to Kythira, we spend a week exploring the island with its plethora of villages, each with their own distinct characters and where families have lived for generations. We walk from Avlemonas, the start of one of the island’s oldest paths, while the tallest lighthouse in Greece sits in the north of the island with views over to the Peloponnese. Trails are lined by dry stone walls, cobbled kaldirimi – ancient footpaths - which wind their way between villages and in the distance, the remains of the ancient, abandoned city of Paleochora can be seen.

Our third centre is the quiet fishing village of Gerolimenas, once an important port for delivering goods to Athens. We explore the inner Mani with its tower houses and rugged terrain as we walk the villages trail. En route to the airport, at the end of the holiday, we have time to visit Diros Cave on an underground boat trip.


Holiday Highlights

  • Visit the fine architecture and mosaics at the archaeological site of Mystra.
  • Explore the rugged terrain of the inner Mani and admire the unique tower houses.
  • Discover the village trails and ancient footpaths on the island of Kythira.
  • Walk to one of the oldest lighthouses in Greece with views over to the Peloponnese.
  • Savour traditional Greek cuisine at local restaurants.
The holiday inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What's included in this holiday Items that are covered in the cost of holiday price.

      Return flights from Heathrow to Kalamata (British Airways) or from Gatwick (Easyjet)
      Airport and port transfers
      En suite accommodation with breakfasts taken at the hotels
      Dinners at local restaurants
      Ferry tickets
      All local transport costs.
Whats not included in this holiday Items that are not covered in the cost of holiday price.

  • Entrance fees to some museums and historic buildings (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Insurance
Please select Departure Date to view:

Please see Holiday Information Sheet for this holidays individual departures itinerary (located under View Departures & Book tab)

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised program, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

This departure: Grade 4

  1. Day 1

    Arrive Kalamata airport and transfer by private coach to our first centre at Gythion.  Dinner is included this evening.

  2. Day 2 to 4

    Out time spent in Gythion will take us on paths up above the town offering panoramic views, to ancient Sparta and Museum of Olives and Mystra.

    Gythio Mavrovouni Circular Walk: An easy walk up the hill behind the town for good views, before descending to Mavrovouni beach for swimming and lunch. Return by taxi or walking back by quiet surfaced road. 7.5k/5 miles; Ascent/descent +/- 160m; Approx 3.5 hours

    Sparta & Mystra: Primarily a visit to the archaeological museum, Ancient Sparta and Mystra. We plan to visit the Museum of the Olive en route back to Gythio. 5kms/3.5 miles; Ascent +250, Descent -225m, Approx 5 hours

  3. Day 5

    Today we make the crossing from the mainland, by ferry, to the island of Kythira. On arrival our coach transfers us to the Hotel Romantica, in Aghia Pelagia, our home for the next seven nights'.

  4. Day 6 to 11

    The tranquil island of Kythira sits off the southern coast of Greece's Peloponnese region. Mass tourism hasn't reached this island, so it is still possible to follow quiet, relatively  unwalked tracks and trails. We'll discover its plethora of villages, each with their own distinct characters and where families have lived for generations.

    We walk from Avlemonas, the start of one of the island’s oldest paths, while the tallest lighthouse in Greece sits in the north of the island with views over to the Peloponnese. Trails are lined by dry stone walls, cobbled kaldirimi – ancient footpaths - which wind their way between villages and in the distance, the remains of the ancient, abandoned city of Paleochora can be seen.

    Akri Spathi Lighthouse: Follow an easy, mainly dirt road, to visit the small port and explore the lighthouse area. Swimming is possible. 11.6kms/7.25 miles (plus possible extension), Ascent +421m/Descent -277m; Approx 5 hours

    Paleohora: A challenging, sometimes scrubby, walk  with some steep sections o the ruins of the ancient island Byzantine capital. 11.2kms/7 miles (with possible extension), Ascent +285m/Descent -285m, Approx 5 hours

    Koloktroni to Diakofti: A coastal walk, mainly downhill, on track from ridge with great views and swimming possibilities at the end of the walk. 5kms/3.5 miles; Ascent +120m/Descent -120m; Approx 2 hours

    Diakofti to Avlemona: Our second coastal path with great views. 6kms/4.5 miles; Ascent 165m/Descent -175m; Approx 5 hours

    Mylopotamos Watermills: An exceptional walk through a gorge, on a narrow path along a stream, some stepping stones, and a good ascent to Mylopotamos. Short at 4km/2.5 miles, it is a picturesque trail with plenty of photo opportunities. 4kms/2.5 miles; Ascent +171m/Descent -171; Approx 4 hours

  5. Day 12

    Returning to the mainland by ferry today, our coach transfers us to the south of the Mani to the little fishing village of Gerolimenas, where we stay at the Hotel O Gerolimenas for three nights'.

  6. Day 13 to 14

    We have two days walking from the fishing village of Gerolimenas, once an important port for delivering goods to Athens. We explore the inner Mani with its tower houses and rugged terrain as we walk the villages trail.

    Mani Villages: Easy walking on quiet roads to see typical Mani houses and villages and visit a Byzantine church/fort area. There is the option for a challenging cliff and scrub walk. 12km/8 miles; Ascent +95m/Descent -75m; Approx 3.5 hours

    Cap Taneron: A beautiful ridge walk with spectacular views and wonderful flowers in the spring. At Vathia, a great photo stop, there are deserted buildings to explore. 7kms/4 miles; Ascent 180m/Descent 260m; Approx 3.5 hours

  7. Day 15

    We leave Gerolimenas behind today as we make our way north to Kalamata airport.

Travel Details

  • Return flights from Heathrow to Kalamata (British Airways) or from Gatwick (Easyjet)
  • Airport and port transfers - arrival transfer by road c.1hr.45mins
  • Upgrades are available on most flights. For scheduled flights this may be Premium Economy, Business or First Class. Most low-cost carriers also have extra legroom seats.
  • If direct regional flights are not available, we can often offer add-on flights to a London airport at a competitive rate. Please ask us for details and a competitive quote.

Trip Map

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Our Accommodation on this holiday

Below is the accommodation featured on this holiday. If you are on a multi-centre holiday, these are highlights of the places where we stay. Please refer to your Holiday Information sheet (which can be found under View Departures & Book), for your departure date and for all your accommodation details.

Hotel O Gerolimenas

The Hotel O Gerolimenas is built in the traditional stone style of the Mani, in the southern Peloponnese. It is a historical building that has been renovated in a sympathetic way. There are just 23 rooms, with mountain or sea views and all are comfortably decorated with air conditioning, TV, mini fridge and en-suite bathroom with hairdryer. The hotel is close to the pebble beach and offers a restaurant and bar.

 

 

 

 

 

 


Hotel Pantheon

We stay in twin bedded and single rooms with shower and wc at the comfortable and friendly Hotel Pantheon in Gythion. Situated on directly on the sea front, views from much of the hotel are magnificent, with the port and blue Aegean in the foreground and mountains rising from the sea in the distance. All sea facing rooms offer en suite facilities, a/c, television, hairdryer and telephone. Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel. The hotel bar, located on the ground floor, has magnificent views of the port. Breakfasts will be taken at the hotel and dinners are taken at local restaurants giving the opportunity to sample the great Greek cuisine.


Hotel Romantica

Rooms at the Hotel Romantica offer its guests a balcony with a sea-view, air conditioning and wireless Internet access. The en suite rooms have a shower, hairdryer and safety deposit box. The sister property, just steps away, has a swimming pool, spa and sauna that hotel guests can use.  









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